Tag Archives: DIY

Nathaniel & Eve’s Quickie Wedding

When photographer Eliza Claire tweeted me to tell me the bride she had just met was wearing a Vivienne Westwood dress for her wedding I immediately got excited. So excited in fact that I ‘bagged’ featuring the event before I’d even seen one photograph! Eve’s dress was not an actual ‘wedding dress’ at all, but one from Vivienne’s Anglomania range that she had fallen in love with.

“I’d been non stop dress shopping for two weeks and so far had six wedding dresses hanging in my wardrobe – all cream or ivory, all perfectly lovely, but none quite hitting the spot,” Eve told me. “The fact was that I wanted a Vivienne Westwood dress – I just love that VW look, the corset style waist, emphasis on the bust, full skirt… But I’d been to her shop and couldn’t find anything, I think at that point I was still set on a white wedding you see. Then, the week before the wedding, in one last ditch attempt to find THE dress, I was racing through Selfridges when I passed the Anglomania concession – and there it was. I fell in love with it straight away. It helps that grey and navy are my favourite colours.”

“However, I was conscious that I needed to ‘wedding it up’ – and I only had a few days to make the look work, so I booked a personal shopping session at Selfridges (it’s a free service) for three days before the wedding. Luckily for me I got Debbie styling me. She’s getting married herself in March – so she’d been doing her own wedding recce of the store for the past year. Debbie totally got the look I was imagining (wedding with an edge) and proceeded to storm round the store picking out killer heels (me: “but i can’t walk in those!” Debbie: “who cares? it’s your wedding – IT’S FASHION!”) and beautiful head pieces. She fixed me up with Christian Louboutin shoes (D: “all brides should tread on red darling!”) and a Cherry Chau head piece (mercifully in the sale…).  I’d love to see what she looks like on her wedding day – amazing I bet…Now all that remained was to take those six ivory wedding dresses back….”

The wedding took place in Oxford, and after a ceremony at Oxford Town Hall the wedding party headed to North Oxford Community Centre for their last minute reception! You see, Nat & Eve may have been together for more than six years but it they got engaged and married within a month!

Eve explained, “I’d been bugging him to propose for years – he didn’t see any immediate need. But then everything changed…In November Nat and I interviewed for jobs in Qatar, in the Middle East, but we weren’t really expecting to get them. Suddenly, on 19 December 2010 it was on – and on fast. They needed us to start in a month (our first day in our new office was 18 January) – and by the way, it’s illegal to live together in Qatar if you’re not married…So action stations – we had four weeks to end our jobs, get married and relocate to the Middle East. Add to that the fact that everything was closed for Christmas and New Year and you’ll see why our wedding was a ‘make do and mend’ affair – and all the better for it we reckon…”

Nathaniel didn’t actually officially propose until a week before the wedding too! “It occurred to me a few days before the wedding that the nature of the job offer and the necessity to get married meant that I’d never had a proposal”, said Eve. “I pointed this out to Nathaniel who immediately went down on one knee and asked me to marry him. I cried – which seems ludicrous when you consider we’d already been organising the day for three weeks…”

However, Eve was sure that the last minute/throw it all together and see what happens nature of their wedding was what made it perfect – and perfect for them.

“I wanted the day to not just be a wedding, but a leaving party too. Most importantly I wanted it to be fun. I’m usually someone who’s really into the details, but I couldn’t be, I didn’t have time, and I think that’s what made it work.  Given a year to plan, I’m sure I’d have become obsessed with it, planning the minute details and watching as the costs rocketed. But as it was I knew I needed everyone to rally round and help, which seemed to make everyone feel more involved in the day. It wasn’t a case of Ii hope nothing goes wrong’  – it was so last minute that my ethos was ‘things will definitely go wrong – but let’s just make sure we enjoy it whatever happens’.”

“Nat and I sat down early and decided what we wouldn’t compromise on – what really mattered. We wanted people to party – there had to be plenty of food, plenty of drink and tons of dancing. For us – our priority was a laid back ceremony and photos of the day to treasure forever. So we invested in a great photographer, a delicious middle eastern themed buffet and a great live band. We made sure we had plenty of booze from Majestic – and the rest we didn’t worry about too much.”

Amy & Jonathan’s Cute, Vintage, Village Hall Wedding

Amy & Jonathan were married in May, in a cute village hall wedding. The couple clearly put a lot of love, thought and detail into their wedding as you can see from the incredible reception images! The whole thing ties together so beautifully – the bunting, the sweets, the cake, the flowers, the mismatched tea cups…I just love it all!

The ceremony was held in Kington St Michael Church, Wiltshire and the reception that followed was at Kington St Michael Village Hall. “We tried to do as much as possible ourselves so the wedding would be as personal as possible,” explained the couple. “We had our wedding in church and then walked across the road to the village hall which we had decorated the day before with our family and friends. It made the day very personal and very different. We hung bunting that a friend had lent us, fairy lights, union jack flags etc and had jam jars of flowers on the tables. We made favours of jam and chutney that doubled as place names.”

“We tried to keep things fairly traditional but with our own spin on it and we tried not to be limited by what a wedding “should” be.  So many weddings seem like the same thing over and over but we wanted ours to stand out. We made summer berries gin for the toasts by adding raspberries, strawberries and blackberries to gin with sugar and letting it sit for four months. Then we removed the fruit and we had pink gin! I also made the cake topper after a visit to Hobbycraft!”

Amy wore a stunning vintage lace dress which she found on eBay. She added her own personal touches to it by adding a silk dress underneath made by Alison Miles.

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Holly & Michael’s Heart of San Francisco, Fashionista Wedding

It was The Great American Music Hall that played host to Holly & Michael’s wedding. It was the couple’s love of a good party, Rock n Roll and quirky fashion that inspired their day. “The team behind Union Square’s uber chic Shotwell Boutique, Holly Kricher and Michael Weaver are style savants who’ve worked their way into the hearts and minds of San Francisco’s fashionistas in a very short period of time,” explained photographer Christina about the couple, “So, it makes sense that their wedding thoroughly reflected their fashion-forward sensibility.”

“Having the reception at The Great American Music Hall not only complemented the bride and groom’s vintage aesthetic, it created the feeling of being at a glitzy nightclub rather than a formal wedding. Instead of assigned seating, the couple opted for a cabaret-style set up for both the ceremony and reception. When those tables filled up, guests could get a bird’s eye view of the action from the balcony upstairs.”

This fashion forward bride wore a dress by Morgane le Fay and Christian Louboutin shoes. She opted not for a tradition bridal jewellery, instead favouring a custom made gorgeous statement necklace, bracelet and earring set by Erickson Beamon. Both Holly and her Maid of Honour carried bouquets that were illuminated with a blue light. The result was very dramatic as they walked down the slightly dimmed aisle.

The couple thought about all of their details carefully and as well as DIYing a lot, had set designer Courtney Atinsky on hand to help them transform their vision into reality. Instead of flower petals, the “flower girls” threw small cloth butterflies down the aisle which they purchased from Micheal’s. They also wore black leotards with tutus.  The favours included vintage-style costume jewellery, such as brooches, rings, and earrings, doubled as table decorations.

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Kennon & Bob’s “Double Rainbow” DIY Wedding

Kennon & Bob’s “double rainbow” wedding is a perfect example of why less than perfect weather doesn’t have to spell a disaster for your wedding or your wedding photographs!

The wedding was held at South Shore Cultural Center, Chicago – the same venue that The Obama’s held their wedding reception! The couple also loved the venue because all their rental fees are given to support arts and cultural programming in the area. “If you asked our family and friends, they’d say that we’re Rock n Roll because we have tattoos and piercings, aren’t traditional or religious, go a lot of concerts and love to throw parties,” the bride told me.  “Ok, we agree.  We just didn’t want a cookie-cutter wedding.  We wanted nothing to do with dowries, religious figures or treating women as possessions. We wanted to share our beliefs in marriage — love, respect, equality, friendship — and to throw one hell of a party!”

“My goal for the “theme” was to have it look like anthropologie threw a wedding.  I gush every time I’m in that store and I wanted to replicate the mix of vintage, quirky, green and modern elements in everything from the cake to the centerpieces to my dress. Bob and I are incredibly goofy, so it was a pretty fun, casual affair in an extremely gorgeous venue. Our poet/geologist/apple-farmer/rooftop gardener friend Dave married us in an Ethical Humanist ceremony that we all wrote.  Music was a HUGE part of our wedding — Esperanza Spalding to Howlin’ Wolf.  We planned everything ourselves — the groom helped A LOT! We made out own DIY invitations, programs, menus, seating chart, donation cards, family photo collage — this was a really fun and long process; I visited dozens of paper shops and online sources looking at design ideas; purchased most of our materials at Paper Source, Michael’s, and Target (design paper, envelopes, stamps, ink.)”

Kennon’s tea length dress was Jessica” by Renella DeFina. She wanted the vintage look for her gown and not only found it on sale at Kasia’s Bridal, but she was able to get a further discount on it because she offered to donate some canned goods to the store’s Thanksgiving food drive!

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A Day in the Life of…The Green Parlour + Lovely DIY Flower Ideas

Hello! New feature alert everybody!

Last week I was invited to visit The Green Parlour, located in Pangbourne, nr Reading, Berkshire. The flower shop is owned by a girl I actually went to school with, Emma Sampson. Having not seen her for 10 years (!) and having a bit of a penchant for pretty blooms, I jumped at the chance to go and have a play. The idea was to do some quick DIY tutorials to show you all how to make your own bouquets, buttonholes and finally a cute flower crown. However much gossip and laughter meant that the photographs I took weren’t the best to illustrate what we did! Whoops…

Emma has written up a very helpful step by step guide for the bouquet and the buttonhole though so I do hope you enjoy these despite my rubbish photos. Why not have a go yourself? (and send me your photos afterwards too please!)

I was also so in love with my flower crown. I’m very sad that it died. I might have to invest in a faux flower crown (WhichGoose on etsy have some amaaazing ones!) so I can feel like a festival hippy chick on a daily basis.

A rustic & vintage inspired bouquet

Flowers used for the bouquet
Pepita spray roses
Hypnose roses
Anemones
Thlaspi (also known as field penny cress or in our shop Mr. funky funky)
Populus eucalyptus (we used the leaves and the berries)
Muscari (aka grape hyacinths)

You will need
Scissors
Flowers
Ribbon, lace, material
Pin or a brooch

1. First things first, make sure all the roses are de-thorned otherwise you may end up with a few bouquet battle scars.

2. I always like to use a rose at the centre of my bouquet as it gives a really lovely focus point as you look at the bouquet from above. We chose to use Pepita spray roses as our first and central flower to give a lovely relaxed dome.

3. Hold the central rose in your non-writing hand about 10cm down from the flower head.

4. We wanted something garden inspired and surrounded the rose with Thlaspi (the green fluffy stuff) you don’t need the whole stem, break bits off and en-circle the central rose – it doesn’t have to be too neat, as long as its about the same height as your central flower.

5. I couldn’t resist the Muscari (the blue buds) for the next bit – they smell just like sweets – just in the same way that we put the Thlaspi around the rose you want to do the same with the muscari so that there is a little ring of the blue flowers poking out in all directions.

6. Now to really start to create a ‘dome’ take 3 Hypnose roses and place around the muscari at a slightly lower height – this will make a triangle around the bouquet and you can fill in the gaps with any type of foliage you like – we went for Populus eucalyptus for its amazing berries.

7.    Carry on the same steps as above, slightly lowering the level of your flowers and adding in anemones, more roses, anything you fancy, until they almost touch your hand.

8. Have someone on hand to help you tie your bouquet together – a standard garden twine is just perfect for this job!

9. Choose your ribbon – I especially love the lace look at the moment – and wrap around your bouquet attach bows, more ribbon, buttons, old brooches anything you like

10. Voila! Get someone else to hold the bouquet so you can see how lovely it looks – pop in a vase ready for your big day.

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Michael & Chloe’s Seriously Bad Ass Festival/Circus Wedding

Michael & Chloe got married in the Circadia Circus Tent at Woodford Folk Festival, Australia. I think that’s all I have to say to let you know that this wedding is seriously bad ass and awesome right?

The bride wore a handmade dress and Wellington boots (festivals are muddy!) and the entire wedding was organized by the ‘Circadia’ team. The couple didn’t have bridesmaids, groomsmen or flowers, but they had a cake organized by Michael’s sisters (and a sweetie table, again organized for them by their family!) Bogan Bingo – a 90’s hair band doing a “bogan” version of Bingo – entertained the guests before the wedding began.

“Like so many Love Stories, ours starts with a boy doing something stupid and painful while trying to impress a girl,” began Michael, the groom. “It was late 2007 and I had only met Chloe a few short weeks earlier, having rejoined my friends at ‘Bound’ – the Acrobalance Troupe I had helped start while at Uni. In those few short weeks on the Southbank lawns however; between shoulder-stands, flying, and cartwheel practice; I found myself inexplicably drawn to Chloe’s company and I hoped – prayed! – she felt the same. On the particular evening upon which our story starts we were practicing tumbling. In true misguided machismo, I set out to impress her by leaping off a concrete bollard to the grass below before dropping forward into a commando-roll. Unfortunately ambition exceeded ability – my leap was too long; my roll mistimed – and my collarbone and shoulder connected with the ground with a resounding ‘crack’!”

“I lay there cursing through gritted teeth under the weight of a dislocated shoulder, broken clavicle, and badly bruised ego. And as my eyes refocused from the pain, I saw her blue eyes above me, filled with concern, pity, and something that looked just a little like laughter… Later that night after Chloe had reset my shoulder and helped me to re-mobilize the joint in the water of the Southbank lagoon, we shared our first kiss. It was way more sexy than that sounds. Because both of us were only recently single when we met, we had promised each other we wouldn’t get ‘too involved'; although we were practically inseparable until I headed away to the Woodford Folk Festival that New Year’s to take part in the Fire Ceremony. There Woodford, bathed away the hurts of old wounds, as Woodford always does, with rain and with fire. I realized what a silly promise we had made and on the 1st of January, 2008 as the Fire Event’s lighthouse burned and tumbled, I called her to say the words my heart had known since that first moment at training, “I love you Chloe”.”

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